How do you persuade new gun owners to train?

A separate discussion got me thinking about all the new gun owners in 2020. When you meet someone who owns a firearm but hasn’t invested time or money into training, have you been able to convince them that it’s important? Can you share any stories of success or failure so I can learn from you?

I know at least a few, and I want to encourage them to get training without making them second-guess their decision

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I would take them with me, usually preceded by a visit at my house so that they could see, touch, ask questions about anything they wanted to in a safe (and quiet) environment).

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The way I do it is I just ask them to come to the range with me so we can practice shooting and then I tell them how important it is to train and keep your skills sharp.

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That’s a great idea. A range visit is a great place to get over those new-gun jitters, and I’ll bet a lot of new gun owners are intimidated at the thought of visiting a range for their first time, just because it’s unfamiliar.

Of course, I’d have to end with a disclaimer that I’m not the expert, and they should consider taking an actual class.

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That’s basically what I do, too. Give them a safety lesson, ensure that the rules are understood and followed, then on to the range, where I go over the rules again. I have yet to have anyone leave the range without a smile - that’s how you win them over - fun always wins!

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Range is the best place to persuade people to train. If I cannot convince them to take a course, my RSO can do this :slightly_smiling_face:
Range is also the best place for safety training - there is always 1 safe direction, and 4 safety rules are hanging on the walls.

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Great topic.

First, I try to get them to come to the range with me.

Second, I live in Michigan, so we dont have constitutional carry. That said, I try to get them to get a CPL if for nothing else than they then get the class time that covers all the bases.

Big thing is getting them interested and WANTING to get better. It seems a lot of people think you buy a gun and put it away in case its ever needed, that break glass in case of emergency thing. Get them shooting, get them addicted.

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A simple conversation can make a big difference as well. If y’all are talking about firearms already, bring up a scenario and ask what they would do and explain why, then increase the difficulty of the scenario. Then lead into the importance of training. That way they have an idea of what to practice even if they aren’t comfortable with live fire yet at the range. Snap caps work wonders. When I met my wife she hadn’t shot a gun before. So what I did was went over firearm safety with her and got her comfortable with everything using snap caps. Her first trip to the range when she was ready was the game changer for her. Every person has a speed they like when it comes to new things, just adapt to that, and they’ll be training in no time.

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Of course, once I take them shooting, I’ll probably have to help them clean it, too.

That might have different effects on different people. Taking apart a rifle and putting it back together got me hooked. But I know some people that will never fire it again if they know it means taking it apart.

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Keep in mind taking someone else shooting just means more range time for you.

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Don’t forget to teach them to not try to catch a gun if they drop it…

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I am a new gun owner and I can’t imagine anyone not seeking knowledge
In a short time I have learn valuable input from this community

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You’d be surprised. I feel like some people think that when they bought a pistol, skills were included. Some people think no one will mess with them because they have a firearm, but hopefully we all know that isn’t the case.

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Just like motorcycles.

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Hahaha exactly like that!

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Gentle, and loving persistence on my story.

I don’t know if this helps or not. My daughter was vehemently anti gun. Until Covid 19 and a semi stalker. She came to me and asked me for a gun. I said of course but you and your Mom have to go get some training firs (figured she would be more likely to go than with me). She said no, and even though my heart said give her a gun, my head said no. Gently over next few months whenever I went to range I would call to see if she wanted to come.

She always told me no. Then one day I had a stressful day and needed some recoil therapy so I called her and asked if she wanted to come, she asked if she could come with one of her roommates and voila, magic happened, turned 3 liberal Democrats into liberal Democrats who also supported the 2nd Amendment.

Daughter now has a S&W Shield .380 EZ, and her concealed carry licence. She’s 20, on full academic scholarship is graduating a 4 year college in 2 years and starts her medical school in January.

I kid, I kid. Or do I? :smiling_imp::eyes::innocent:

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Your daughter is in good company. I know plenty of liberal Democrats who support 2A and shoot regularly.

As others have already said cover safety then cover safety and cover safety one more time just before starting to shoot

Another way to get others to train is to call it a friendly competition especially when working on fundamentals (it’s usually easier to get people to “shoot for fun” than training)

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Thanks for your post.

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There’s one specific friend who tried several pistols, bought the one she liked (Ruger), and never takes it out of her purse. She’s not interested in training, and she won’t go to the range with anyone. She likes knowing she has her pistol, but she seems turned off by the idea that there’s more to it than that.

That’s a tricky one for me. I really feel like she needs some range time, but I’m afraid that if I push her she’ll just go the other direction.

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